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Project: Preventing violent encounters with first responders

People who live with serious mental illness or related challenges face heightened risks of violent encounters with first responders. Administrative and qualitative data from police, fire, and other first responders allow us to identify individuals, places, and events associated with such violent encounters. This project will use predictive analytics to improve preventive services and emergency responses for individuals and families who face these risks.

Project: Predicting mortality among high-users of safety-net services in Illinois

Individuals who pass through jails, homeless services, and other safety-net institutions face severe risks of premature mortality from opioid overdose, homicide, and other causes. This machine learning project uses integrated administrative data from diverse city, county, and state data sources in Illinois to identify key risk-factors for premature mortality.

Mentor: Harold Pollack, Helen Ross Professor of Social Service Administration, Co-director, University of Chicago Health Lab

Harold Pollack is the Helen Ross Professor at the School of Social Service Administration. He is also an Affiliate Professor in the Biological Sciences Collegiate Division and the Department of Public Health Sciences.

Co-founder of the University of Chicago Crime Lab, he is co-director of the University of Chicago Health Lab. He is a committee member of the Center for Health Administration Studies (CHAS) at the University of Chicago. His current NIH-funded research concerns improved services for individuals at the boundaries of the behavioral health and criminal justice systems, disabilities, and two major new efforts to address the opioid epidemic in Illinois and across the nation.

Past President of the Health Politics and Policy section of the American Political Science Association, Professor Pollack has been appointed to three committees of the National Academy of Sciences. He received his undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Princeton University. He holds master’s and doctorate degrees in Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. Before coming to SSA, Professor Pollack was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Scholar in Health Policy Research at Yale University and taught Health Management and Policy at the University of Michigan School of Public Health.

He has published widely at the interface between poverty policy and public health. His research appears in such journals as Addiction, Journal of the American Medical Association, American Journal of Public Health, Health Services Research, Pediatrics, and Social Service Review. His journalism regularly appears in such outlets as Washington Post, the Nation, the New York TimesNew Republic, and other popular publications. His American Prospect essay, “Lessons from an Emergency Room Nightmare” was selected for the collection Best American Medical Writing, 2009.